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N4E FINAL user meeting Barcelona 2014

The FINAL N4E User's Meeting took place at ICFO, Barcelona (Spain) on December 11-12, 2014ICFO building

This event, which is open to N4E Project Consortium Members and to all Associate Partners, is an opportunity to meet, exchange ideas, explore synergies and get to know each other better, with special emphasis on how to continue collaborations and common activities beyond project duration.

See the schedule for the event and links to the presentations (both as handouts and in video format) below.

Deadline for registration: December 5, 2014

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Nanophotonics – Increasing efficiency and cost-effectiveness in solid-state lighting

Jointly with ForumLED Europe

Day: Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Time: 9:20 – 17:00
Access: Free, open to all holders of an exhibit pass for ForumLED 2014
Venue: Studio 4 on ForumLED, GRANDE HALLE DE LA VILLETTE, 211 Avenue Jean Jaures, 75019 Paris – France

Scope:

N4E Nanophotonics for Energy Efficiency Network of Excellence (N4E) is a network that gathers 10 European laboratories at the cutting edge in research on nanophotonics.

The Conference in the morning is built to inform one another about the latest developments, issues, challenges and opportunities. The second part offers the possibility to discuss directly joint future activities with the Nanophotonics and Solid-State Lighting communities.

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Nanophotonics: From Research to Driving Competitiveness in Solar Cells

Jointly with European Photovoltaic Technology PlatformNanophotonics Europe Association and Nanophotonics for Energy Efficiency Network of Excellence, and with the support of Photonics21 and EPIC

Day: Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Time: 13:30 – 18:30
Access: Open to all registered participants of the EU PVSEC 2014

Scope

A forum for the Nanophotonics and Photovoltaics communities to exchange ideas, to inform one another of latest developments, issues, challenges and opportunities, and to discuss joint future activities.

Background

The Photovoltaics and Nanophotonics communities have recognised the need to work together in order to achieve results that will bring the field well beyond existing approaches and technologies. In order to reach that goal, information flow and collaborations between the two communities need to be strengthened, so that nanophotonics ideas can eventually become practically applicable and scalable, thus significantly contributing to increased competitiveness.
The Nanophotonics community is largely concerned with increased light trapping and is exploring a variety of avenues to achieve this. The real problem, however, is to demonstrate enhanced efficiency in working solar cells or maintaining efficiency while drastically reducing device thickness. Credible
comparisons with state-of-the-art technologies should be pursued. The two communities need to work together to achieve this.

The meeting aimed to address the following questions

What does the Photovoltaics community expect from nanophotonics? What can nanophotonics offer to photovoltaics? How can interaction and collaboration between the two communities be enhanced? Where and how can we work together?

workshop picture

Programme Outline

13:30 – 13:40            Welcome and Introduction, Wim C. Sinke (European Photovoltaic Technology Platform) and Gonçal Badenes (Nanophotonics Europe Association, Nanophotonics for Energy Efficiency NoE) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Badenes - Introduction
13:40 – 14:00            Nanophotonic light management for solar cells - Fundamentals, limitations, and opportunities, Uwe Rau, Director IEK5-Photovoltaics (Forschungszentrum Jülich) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Rau - Nanophotonic Light Management for Solar Cells – Fundamentals, Limitations and Opportunities

14:00 – 14:20            Photonic structures for light trapping in thin-film silicon solar cells, Lucio Claudio Andreani, Professor (Università degli Studi di Pavia) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Andreani - Photonic structures for light trapping in thin-film silicon solar cells
14:20 – 14:50            Small molecule OPV: From the lab to roll-to-roll production, Toni Müller, Team Leader Lifetime and Characterization (Heliatek GmbH) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Müller - Small-molecule OPV: From the Lab to Roll-to-Roll Production

14:50 – 15:15            Coffee Break

15:15 – 15:45            What can nanophotonics offer the photovoltaic industry?, Kylie Catchpole, Associate Professor (Australian National University) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Catchpole - What can nanophotonics offer the photovoltaic industry?

15:45 – 16:05            Nanophotonics for highly efficient silicon solar cells and beyond, Jan Christoph Goldschmidt, Head of Team Novel Solar Cell Concepts (Fraunhofer ISE) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Goldschmidt - Nanophotonics for High-Efficiency Silicon Solar Cells and Beyond

16:05 – 16:25            Understanding at the nanoscale to drive solar at the TW scale, Erik Garnett, Group Leader Nanoscale Solar Cells (AMOLF) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Garnett - Understanding at the nanoscale to drive solar at the TW scale

16:25 – 16:45            EMIRI - Establishing Industrial Leadership of EU in Advanced Materials for low-carbon energy & energy efficiency technologies – The case of PV, Fabrice Stassin, Managing Director (Energy Materials Industrial Research Initiative Association) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Stassin - A Strategy and Implementation Plan for Advanced Materials for PV during Horizon 2020

16:45 – 17:10            Coffee Break

17:10 – 17:40            From 0 to 20 (percent)  – in two years – perovskite based photovoltaics – separating hype from hope, Christopher Case, Chief Technology Officer (Oxford PV) icon EU-PVSEC2014 - Case - From 0 to 20 % in two years Perovskite based photovoltaics – separating hype from hope

17:40 – 18:30            Panel/Discussion, Moderator: Thomas Krauss (York Univ.)

Panel session

Executive Summary

The Photovoltaics community continues to look towards Nanophotonics with great expectation, especially as the need for novel concepts is clearly recognised as a driver for future innovation and commercial competitiveness of the sector.

A healthy mix of representatives from academia, industry and research institutes contributed their thoughts, which sparked a lively discussion amongst speakers and audience alike.

Following last year's event, which set the challenge of demonstrating the benefit of novel concepts in real photovoltaic devices, the nanophotonics community is addressing the challenge in a number of ways. The challenge had been posed by Stefan Glunz of the Fraunhofer ISE, who also received the Becquerel Prize for his pioneering work in high-efficiency silicon solar cells at the same meeting. Jan Christoph Goldschmidt, Head of Team Novel Solar Cell Concepts, Fraunhofer ISE responded to the challenge by reporting progress towards making "good cells better" using nanophotonic light trapping concepts. He also reported new work on using local field enhancement for the upconversion of long wavelength into shorter wavelength photons, thereby converting non-photoactive light into photocurrent. Lucio Andreani, Professor at the University of Pavia, highlighted the interplay between photonic and electronic properties of nanostructured solar cells, and showed that both could be satisfied with careful design.

An unexpected benefit of using plasmonic field enhancement was reported by Erik Garnett, Group Leader Nanoscale Solar Cells at AMOLF, in the context of thin films loaded with silver nanowires to act as transparent conductors. He showed that plasmonic hotspots could be used to weld the nanowires together, thereby improving the electrical conductivity of the thin films, to the extent that they could rival or even outperform ITO in terms of both conductivity and transparency.

Roll-to roll processing for organic solar cells was discussed by Toni Müller, Team Leader Lifetime and Characterization, Heliatek GmbH, and was identified as a promising method for imprinting nanostructures into solar cells, also given the fact that holographic Christmas-wrapping paper is being produced cheaply by a similar process.

Kylie Catchpole, Associate Professor, Australian National University, highlighted that the next generation of high-performance tandem cells could benefit significantly from light trapping and related nanophotonic techniques, but that it was much more difficult to implement than in single junction cells, hence providing an exciting challenge. She also identified the new generation of perovskite materials as a prime candidate for the top cell of a tandem. In the final presentation, Christopher Case, Chief Technology Officer of Oxford PV, then expanded on the properties and opportunities of perovskite materials, also pointing out the opportunity of using them in building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV). In the discussion, light trapping was mentioned as a way to reduce material thickness, thereby improving electrical transport properties while maintaining optical absorption.

Research into nanophotonics is actively addressing potential applications across a wide range of subjects and particularly in photovoltaics, with European groups leading at the worldwide level, but the connection to industry is still relatively weak. If these connections can be strengthened, European industry will be in an exceptional position to exploit nanophotonics and deliver novel technological solutions. This represents a phenomenal opportunity that should not be missed.

nanophotonics4energyfront      

            photonics-21                              

 

N4E User Meeting Istanbul 2014

The 2nd N4E User's Meeting will take place in Istanbul (Turkey) on June 16-17, 2014.

This event, which is open to N4E Project Consortium Members and to all Associate Partners, is an opportunity to meet, exchange ideas, explore synergies and get to know each other better, with special emphasis on how to continue collaborations and common activities beyond project duration.

The meeting will include oral presentations (with questions and answers), and lots of opportunities to discuss possible collaborations and future common activities. Each institution will be given the opportunity to present their activities and results.

Deadline for submission of abstracts: May 15, 2014. The final schedule and program will be published shortly after reception of abstracts. The meeting will start on June 16 in the morning, and finish on June 17 after lunch.

Deadline for registration: May 30, 2014

Thank you very much in advance for your participation. We look forward to have a very fruitful 1st User's Meeting counting on the collaborative and pro-active attitude of all member and associate members of N4E.

Download the program here: icon N4E Meeting Program - Istanbul 2014 (448.45 kB)

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Nanophotonics: Essential ingredient for efficient and cost-effective solar cells? - Executive Summary

Jointly with European Photovoltaic Technology Platform, Nanophotonics Europe Association and Nanophotonics for Energy Efficiency Network of Excellence, and with the support of Photonics21 and EPIC

Day: Thursday, 03 October 2013
Time:09:00 – 12:30
Access: Open to all participants of the EU PVSEC 2013

Scope:

A forum for the Nanophotonics and Photovoltaics communities to exchange ideas, to inform one another of latest developments, issues, challenges and opportunities, and to discuss joint future activities.

Background:

The Photovoltaics community is driven by issues relating to materials, device processing and manufacturing, and mainly focusing on the $/W or $/m2 metrics. Novel ideas emerging out of the Nanophotonics community may address these issues by increasing device efficiencies (ideally at constant cost per unit area), or by allowing a reduction in the amount of material used (and hence, a cost reduction) for the same efficiency, but these ideas are often seen as impractical and not scalable. There is a clear need for the Photovoltaics and Nanophotonics communities to inform one another of the mutual constraints and capabilities and to explore the way forward, with the goal of ensuring the long term European competitiveness. The most suitable funding sources need to be identified and brought on board.

The meeting aimed to address the following questions:

What are the material and engineering constraints that prevent the implementation of Nanophotonic concepts? Are Nanophotonics concepts scalable to square metre panels? What is the trade-off between performance and cost? What are the material issues, also in view of earth abundance?

Programme Outline

09:00 – 09:10            Welcome and Introduction, Wim C. Sinke (European Photovoltaic Technology Platform) and Gonçal Badenes (Nanophotonics Europe Association, Nanophotonics for Energy Efficiency NoE)
09:10 – 09:35            Light management for ultra-high efficiency photovoltaics, Albert Polman (AMOLF)
09:35 – 10:00            Nanophotonics for more efficient solar cells, Franz-Josef Haug (EPFL) icon Presentation handout (1.51 MB)
10:00 – 10:25            From nanoscale to gigawatt: a possible roadmap for how photonics will empower photovoltaics, Ounsi El Daif (IMEC) icon Presentation handout (2.9 MB)

10:25 – 10:45            Coffee Break

10:45 – 11:10            Thin-film photovoltaics: industrial strategies for increasing the efficiency and reducing costs, Anna Battaglia, Cosimo Gerardi (STMicroelectronics) icon Presentation handout (3.42 MB)
11:10 – 11:35            Photonics for high-efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells, Stefan Glunz (FhG ISE) icon Presentation handout (3.06 MB)

11:35 – 12:00            Panel/Discussion, Moderator: Thomas Krauss (York Univ.)
12:00 – 12:10            Conclusions & future actions icon Executive Summary (PDF version)

Executive Summary

The workshop yielded a lively discussion with many contributions from the floor, the main points being summarised below:

The Photovoltaics community is looking towards Nanophotonics with great expectation. The need for novel concepts is clearly recognised as a driver for future innovation and commercial competitiveness of the sector.

Photovoltaics is looking for “hero”- demonstrations that will really break new ground in order to lead the field. Whether the nanostructure is at the front or at the back of the cell, whether it includes plasmonics, Mie scatterers, or other features matters less – as long as it works convincingly and brings the field (well) beyond existing approaches and technologies. According to current understanding and proofs of principle, Nanophotonics may offer benefits for advanced solar cell and module designs, but the “killer application” still needs to be demonstrated. Moreover, the practical applicability of many of proposed concepts is a major challenge.

Nanophotonics should concern itself with what it can do well; part of the discussion is governed by ray optics arguments, but the opportunities offered by wave optics, such as exceeding the Lambertian limit for light trapping and controlling the light flow in the active layer are particularly important and therefore need to be explored further. Other ideas concerned the exploration of the photonic properties of existing electrical structures; small modifications may already yield sizeable effects without adding cost. In any case, work on photonic structures must carefully consider its impact on electrical behaviour of the devices.

On the other hand, Nanophotonics should not overly constrain itself with eventual manufacturability issues or manufacturing cost; as long as the concepts provide real added value, industry will find a way to come up with workable solutions.

The Nanophotonics community is largely concerned with increased light trapping and is exploring a variety of avenues to achieve this. The real problem, however, is to demonstrate enhanced efficiency in working solar cells or maintaining efficiency while drastically reducing device thickness. Credible comparisons with state-of-the-art technologies should be pursued. The two communities need to work together to achieve this.

Most of Nanophotonics work is concerned with novel geometries for light scattering. More effort should be spent to extend the frequency range over which light can be used efficiently, e.g. using spectral slicing, or up/down-conversion.

The analogy with nanostructured LEDs was made; initial papers on enhanced extraction efficiency from photonic crystals transformed the industry to the extent that nowadays, virtually all high-performance LEDs on the market use nanostructured surfaces of some kind.

The meeting concluded with the agreement to invite experts from the Nanophotonics community to the relevant topical working groups that the European Photovoltaic Technology Platform plans to form (e.g. to prepare strategic input for H2020 or the Solar Europe Industry Initiative, or a position paper for public and/or policy use).

nanophotonics4energyfront      

            photonics-21                             

Download as PDF document: icon Nanophotonics: Essential ingredient for efficient and cost-effective solar cells? - Executive Summary (518.6 kB)

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